Youth programmes receive $20K boost

Saddle Hill Foundation Trust chairman Alan Shanks (left) and senior youth worker Caleb Griffith are thankful for the funding from Bendigo Valley Sports and Charity Foundation. Photo: Jessica Wilson
Saddle Hill Foundation Trust chairman Alan Shanks (left) and senior youth worker Caleb Griffith are thankful for the funding from Bendigo Valley Sports and Charity Foundation. Photo: Jessica Wilson

The Saddle Hill Foundation Trust has been given a $20,000 boost, which will keep its youth programmes running.

The trust was given $20,000 by Bendigo Valley Sports and Charity Foundation, which it will put towards youth workers’ salaries.

Trust chairman Alan Shanks said the funding was a ‘‘strong acknowledgment’’ the foundation supported the work the trust did with youth.

While the trust did some fundraising, it was reliant on grants and funding, he said.

‘‘It really allows the trust to sustain its existence.’’

Youth worker Caleb Griffith said the trust ran free youth programmes, including Ground Zero for year 7 children, Summit for year 8s and Challenge for children in years 9 and 10.

The ‘‘outdoor adventure­based’’ programmes got children out of their comfort zones and taught them life skills.

Most children who went through the programme became leaders when they were older, Mr Griffith said.

Each week, staff interacted with about 250 youth.

At present, Mr Griffith is in Vanuatu with a group of 11 children aged 14-18 to work at a school teaching English, organising athletics games and running morning chapels.

‘‘It’s a chance for 11 of our youth who have gone through those other programmes to step up in another way in another country,’’ he said.

The trust also works with Taieri College to provide extra support for pupils.

JESSICA.WILSON@thestar.co.nz 

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